Open This Sunday: Myth and Mystique: Cleveland’s Gothic Table Fountain
The CMA's next centennial exhibition Myth and Mystique: Cleveland’s Gothic Table Fountain opens this Sun, 10/9!
This exhibition will present the most complete surviving example of a Gothic table fountain, which has been preserved at the CMA, as the focus of a single study. This approximately 700 year old medieval object was likely produced in Paris for a person of high status, perhaps a member of the royal court. Impressive in their sheer technical wizardry, these mechanical devices with moving parts spouted (sometimes perfumed) water. They were once thought to grace banqueting tables, however, they were more likely placed on pedestals in strategic locations in palaces, where they were showcased as spectacles of ingenuity by their owners to delight their guests.
In this show, the table fountain will be placed at the center of a group of objects including luxury silver, hand-washing vessels, enamels, illuminated manuscripts, and a painting. Each will inform some aspect of the fountain’s history, functionality, presumed use and context, materials, technique, dating, and style.
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